Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Remember my Rule?

My set in stone, unrelenting rule that I was NOT allowed on the internet during the hours my daughter is in school? Yeah . . .

Oh well, I have an excuse, sort of. Many of you know (thanks to my habit of spilling my personal dramas and turmoils all over my blog) that I have been in a bit of a dilemma with my writing. I am, literally, at a stand still--unable to make a move in either direction because I keep changing my dang mind. I have overthought this problem to an epic level, surpassing, I'm convinced, even the most hermetic of ancient philosophers.

Here's a map of my mental processes:

7:30 a.m. Renee awakes and lies in bed for a moment, staring at the soft movement of her ceiling fan. A calm feeling comes over her. Yes, she thinks. Yes, I am going to go for it with Drone. Today. I'll open a Word file and just start writing.

12:09 p.m.
As Renee spreads peanut butter on a second slice of bread, she is struck with the realization: how can she abandon Searcher after everything she's been through with it? After the late nights, and tears, and moments of euphoric happiness? No, no, this is all wrong. She has to keep going, finish those edits, submit it to agents!

1:00 p.m.Children are either at school or sleeping. Renee can be found puttering around on the internet, drowning out any unpleasant dilemmas with cold Dr. Pepper and ice in a bright orange cup. (You'll notice, of course, she's not doing any writing.)

6:45 p.m.
Warm dishwater and the scent of Pink Grapefruit detergent awakes in Renee the understanding that her best work is still ahead of her. It is something she has to strive for. Something she has to go after. She is growing and she has to keep growing. She can't let sentimentality keep her down.

12:38 a.m.
Renee sits on the edge of her bed. The house is quiet and dark, peaceful. She glances at the thick, printed copy of Searcher on her nightstand. Her fingers set over the words, over the frantic red and blue markings made later. And it's all clear to her. She's going to stay with Searcher. Yes, she's growing, but she can put that into editing. She can make it as good as any new thing she would write. With this calm reassurance, Renee nestles down to sleep.

Repeat cycle tomorrow.


Natalie said...

Aw, may I join you? I've started two new projects. Started editing my older work. And I'm still completely lost about what to work on.

Hang in there. Try doing a little of both. There's not rule that says you can't edit a chp a day and then wirte new stuff.

Miriam S.Forster said...

Or do them on alternate days. I know what you mean though, I've put my new WIP on hold while I do these new revisions and that was a hard decision.

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I hate that feeling of indecision. It's so difficult to know what is the best thing to do. It's hard enough to feel like you have to meet other people's expectations. Add in your own and it's nearly impossible. Hang in there. Whatever you choose will be right and don't be too hard on yourself.

Kasie West said...

I think our best work is always ahead of us. We will grow as writer's as long as we're willing to keep writing. But, I know what you mean. It's hard to decide if now is the time to make the jump. Especially since we know how much heartache there is to be had in the world of publishing. Good luck.

Kasie West said...

writers, not writer's. Dang why don't I edit before I type in that verification word.

Renee Collins said...

Thanks for the support, guys. :)

Natalie-Yes, I've told myself that I can do both, but I don't really work that way. I can, but I usually end up focusing on one. So, I guess I'm trying to just decide in advance which one that will be.

Miriam-Alternate days is an interesting idea. Maybe even alternate weeks or something. Hmm . . .

Candice-It is hard. I think I'm just putting too much pressure on myself to make the "Right" choice.

sraasch said...

I always wondered how "big time" authors crank out so many novels each year. They must be writing one while editing another -- ie: it's okay for us to do that too. Be bold! Be daring! Be multitasking!

Renee Collins said...

Kasie-Whoa, cross posted. Anyway, thanks. You make a good point. And really, if I am growing, I can technically put my skill into editing. . . . Right?

Renee Collins said...

Sara-DOUBLE CROSS POSTED! Too weird. :) 9 p.m. must be the hoppin' time to be online.

Anyway, I agree! How these people do it, I have no idea.

Lady Glamis said...

Sorry I'm late to this Renee. I'm trying to lessen my blog reading, haha.

I get hung up on so many things lately, and I've come to a standstill more than once. It is the reason I am sitting at 45k instead of 80k on my rewrite. And notice I'm REwriting... THAT took months to decide!

And I've been struggling with putting some "spicier" scenes into my book. Just ask Natalie how much I've struggled with all of THAT. Oh, man on man do I understand your dilemma.

I've learned that just sitting down to write in these situations is not a good idea. I have to come to decision first, or I'll just continue to flounder and the writing will flounder as well.

Good luck! And let me know if you need anything, please! Sometimes just talking it out helps a lot.

Jessie Oliveros said...

I am glad that you drink your Dr. Pepper from an orange cup, and not from a blue or a green one.